Jockey Javier Castellano took Keen Ice on a slick ride at the Travers Stakes in Saratoga — and jockey Victor Espinoza didn’t live up to his first name, for once. Castellano, not Espinoza, was the victor. Even more surprised than Espinoza must have been his famous ride — Triple Crown winner American Pharoah must have been startled to see a thoroughbred in front of him. It’s like Michael Jordan having a dunk blocked. Doesn’t happen. But it did.
American Pharoah didn’t have to see the leader for long — only at the very end. Until then Espinoza had the beloved American Pharoah out in front, the position he’s used to. Even after winning the Triple Crown at Belmont, American Pharoah promptly won his next race out at Monmouth. He looked as if he’d never lose. Keen Ice, the Travers Stakes winner, made $670,000. American Pharoah’s place was worth $230,000. Frosted showed, winning $125,000.